Dr. Avi Datta is an award-winning author of the genre-bending sci-fi series, The Time Corrector. The Winding (Global Book Awards Gold Medalist, Reader’s Favorite top five SciFi-Time Travel Fiction and 5* Rating) is his first novel in the series, and The Movement is his second installment. He doesn’t like to box his stories into one sub-genre. Instead, he challenges the core assumption that causality and time are linear. Through that lens, he explores themes like loss, love, politics, fantasy, art, friendship, racism, alternate realities, music, and artificial intelligence.
He is a Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at Illinois State University. He is also affiliated with Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo, Japan. He is an accomplished scholar in Radical Innovation, Management of Innovation, Technology Strategy, and Strategic Entrepreneurship. He is a writer, an avid painter, a watch collector, and a coffee enthusiast who enjoys classic rock and western classical music outside his day job. He can be reached at https://avi-datta.com/
“An engaging SF tale whose cause-effect plotline takes a licking and keeps on ticking...The book is closer to Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife (2003) in dealing with matters of the heart. But just when readers might have the plot strands all decoded, a concluding twist and a surreal-vision finale turn the storyline into a dense, snarled mesh of gears and escapements. The knotty narrative is captivating in stretches.”
– Kirkus Reviews
A celebrity entrepreneur and inventor in the near future confronts a masked enemy, time-travel paradoxes, and historical rewrites in Datta’s sequel to The Winding (2021).
This series installment begins years after the first, focusing again on 21st-century celebrity Vincent Abajian, a scientific genius whose Quantum World company leads the planet in technological progress. He has a secret, genetic “time corrector” ability that allows him to enter a time/space warp called “the core” and shape the past, present, and future. In the world of the novel, “time turbulence” storms occasionally strike, and one such disaster robbed Vincent of his 1990s boarding school love, musician Akane. In the previous book, Vince rediscovered temporary bliss with an alternate version of Akane named Emika, but the relationship soured; Emika was pregnant, but Vince, whose memory was later wiped, isn’t currently aware of this. The long-lost Akane returns to his life, but Vincent’s idyll is interrupted by lingering memories of Emika and her baby. Meanwhile, Quantum World is introducing new mind-data interface helmets that promise a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease and downloadable access to many skills. In addition, masked marauder/hacker Vandal starts launching attacks against Vincent and his loved ones. Datta offers a book that’s most likely to appeal to attentive fans of the first series installment. For example, he further complicates the already complex nonlinear structure of The Winding, with the plot unfolding via multiple first-person perspectives in multiple timelines, sometimes recapping the same incidents from different points of view. Numerous footnotes attempt to clarify points or highlight foreshadowing in the last book, but newcomers may still find this volume very difficult to follow. In a preface, the author explains that a sojourn in Japan heavily influenced the material here, and, indeed, readers will find that the work has a very strong anime flavor, with mecha combat suits, Japanese dialogue (partially translated), unresolvable romantic sentiments, and moments of mysticism (the titan Chronos and his rebellious Greek god-children have stakes in the proceedings). Finally, an open ending offers a revelation of a not-so-surprising master villain.
A highly complex middle-chapter installment of an intricate SF/fantasy that requires sharp attention.
Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2023
Page count: 504pp
Publisher: Bublish, Inc.
Review Posted Online: Dec. 28, 2022
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2023
In this debut SF novel, an academic/inventor struggles through decades of losing, regaining, and losing the loves of his life due to a mysterious phenomenon.
Datta’s tale envisions an Earth suffering rare but disruptive “time turbulence” events. As a brilliant youngster in 1990s America, Vincent Abajian is orphaned, bullied, and becomes an outcast at school. He finds solace with Akane Egami, a Japanese Dutch classmate and music prodigy. But this incipient love of his life disappears into a sudden time turbulence in 1991. By 2024, still obsessed with Akane and what-ifs, Abajian is in the forefront of artificial intelligence and robotics advancements, leading a university research team. He finds patronage in superrich Philip Nardin, who holds the patent for intreton, “an element absent from the periodic table,” which seems somehow tied to time itself. After the two men bond over a shared fascination with high-end watches, Nardin takes Abajian into his confidence, hiring the scientist to write his biography. Nardin has survived multiple time turbulences, emerging with insights into future and parallel timelines—which is vital, first because corrupt congressmen and military-industrial lobbyists seek to exploit and weaponize intreton. And second, because Abajian meets Emika Amari, a young, postdoctoral scientist and violinist attracted to him. Emika seems a parallel-universe incarnation of Akane, and, thus, Abajian’s true love and happiness reborn. But Emika can also be petulant, jealous, and flighty. Who is she really, and what is Abajian’s destiny in love and intrigue? Readers may find the leapfrogging, back-and-forth narrative chronology a bit turbulent itself. Datta’s formidable mainsprings of deep thought, causality, horology, music, and shameless romanticism help set up this first installment of an SF series. It is not a time-travel novel that trades in pulp thrills and fighting Morlocks (despite political shenanigans). The book is closer to Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife (2003) in dealing with matters of the heart. But just when readers might have the plot strands all decoded, a concluding twist and a surreal-vision finale turn the storyline into a dense, snarled mesh of gears and escapements. The knotty narrative is captivating in stretches, but the engineering of Doctor Who’s Time and Relative Dimensions in Space is more easily grasped.
An engaging SF tale whose cause-effect plotline takes a licking and keeps on ticking.
Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2021
Page count: 322pp
Publisher: Bublish, Incorporated
Review Posted Online: Dec. 28, 2021
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2022
Unexpected skill or talent
Synesthetic, Artist, Professor, Ramen San
THE WINDING: TIME CORRECTOR SERIES BOOK 1: Gold Medal Winner of the Global Book Award 2022 for Best Science Fiction-Romance Novel., 2002
THE WINDING: TIME CORRECTOR SERIES BOOK 1: Honorable Mention as the top five Sci Fi-Time Travel books of 2022 by Reader's Favorite, 2002
Interview with Avi Datta, Author of The Winding, 2022
Avi Datta - Intelligent, Transporting Time-Travel Story, 2022
Fantasy Writer and Scholar Debuts “The Winding,” First in a Trilogy of Time Traveling Sci-Fi Novels Exploring Race, Class, Politics, and the Nature of Love, 2022
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